Tensions escalated between Rivers State Governor Siminalayi Fubara and the state House of Assembly on Monday as lawmakers accused the governor of making unlawful appointments, setting the stage for a potential clash over governance issues.
During a plenary session presided over by Speaker Martin Amaewhule, legislators criticized Governor Fubara for what they deemed illegal appointments, raising concerns about adherence to state laws and constitutional provisions.
The lawmakers specifically contested the appointments of officials, including Mr. Goodlife Ben as acting Chairman of the Local Government Service Commission, Dr. Mrs. Ine Briggs as acting Director-General of the Bureau for Public Procurement, and Mr. Tonte Davies as acting Administrator of the New Cities Development Authority.
According to Majority Leader Major Jack, the appointments transgressed existing legislation and constitutional frameworks, compelling the Assembly to assert its oversight role and demand compliance with legal protocols.
In response to the Assembly’s assertions, Governor Fubara cautioned nine pro-Wike commissioners, who had recently returned to his cabinet, against undermining his administration’s objectives. Fubara emphasized the need for cooperation among government officials to uphold the state’s interests.
Addressing the returnee commissioners, Fubara underscored the importance of their roles in advancing the government’s agenda while urging them to refrain from actions detrimental to the state’s stability.
The political turmoil in Rivers State, characterized by factional allegiances and power struggles, witnessed the appointment of Edison Ehie, a former factional Speaker of the House of Assembly, as Chief of Staff to Governor Fubara. Ehie’s appointment followed the resignation of Chidi Amadi amid the ongoing rift between Fubara and Wike loyalists.
Fubara’s announcement of Ehie’s appointment came amidst speculation surrounding Ehie’s involvement in the Chief of Staff’s duties, underscoring the intrigue surrounding political appointments in the state.
The issuance of a special government announcement, which also detailed the appointment of five special advisers for the governor, marked a significant development in the state’s political landscape.
As Rivers State grapples with internal divisions and governance challenges, Fubara’s administration seeks to navigate a complex political terrain while addressing pressing issues facing the state.